Canadian Forest Service Publications

Adapting sustainable forest management to climate change: scenarios for vulnerability assessment. 2012. Price, D.T.; Isaac, K.J. Canadian Council of Forest Ministers, Ottawa, Ontario. 18 p.

Year: 2012

Issued by: Northern Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 34558

Language: English

CFS Availability: Order paper copy (free), PDF (download)

Mark record

Abstract

Maintaining sustainable forest management practices in Canada during the 21st century and beyond will be a major challenge, given the uncertainties of global socioeconomic development and multiple interacting consequences of global environmental change. Scenarios represent an important tool for decision makers to use in exploring the causes and effects of possible changes in future environmental conditions and the implications of those changes for forests and the social, environmental, and economic benefits that forests provide. Scenario analysis allows managers and other stakeholders to evaluate the consequences of plausible alternative futures for forest management and to develop robust adaptation strategies. This report addresses the origins of the scenarios that will be needed to assess the impacts of climate change and other stressors on managed forest systems. It examines how scenarios can be constructed for application at local scales (such as a forest management unit), using both top–down (downscaling from global and regional projections) and bottom–up (accounting for local trends and projections) approaches. Practical examples of using scenarios for impact assessment in forestry are briefly reviewed in four case studies from across Canada.

Plain Language Summary

This report, one in a series by the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers’ Climate Change Task Force, introduces the scenario analysis approach and shows how it can be used in vulnerability assessment, to help adapt forest management to a changing climate. Scenario analysis treats multiple futures as being equally plausible. In sustainable forest management, scenarios may be developed for local areas using “top-down” approaches (making local projections from regional or global ones), or “bottom-up” approaches (gathering local data and insight on key local vulnerabilities to effects of climate change). Data and analysis from experts, research, and local communities may be used. Scenarios are best developed in a participatory process with input from local experts. The report provides case studies of scenarios developed for forestry in Canada. It thus provides important background information for forest-based communities and forestry managers to use in planning for adaptation to climate change.

Also available under the title:
Adapter l’aménagement forestier durable aux changements climatiques : emploi de scénarios dans l’évaluation de la vulnérabilité. (French)